The producer who changed Tyler the Creator’s life
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The producer who changed Tyler the Creator’s life

Tyler The Creator’s music has grown and evolved over the years. When he first emerged on the scene in the early 2010s with projects such as GoblinWolf and Cherry Bomb, he was a rowdy, experimental and highly unpredictable character, and his music reflected that.

However, over the years, as he has ascended in the industry and brushed shoulders with legends, he has matured with his sound and simultaneously honed his craft. Widely considered one of the most creative minds in contemporary hip-hop, through his music alone, it is evident draws on a vast, eclectic array of influences to bring us the fantastic material he does. 

However, concerning producers there are certain figures he looks up to greatly. Since his emergence, the lyricist and trend-setter has been able to collaborate with the likes of Kanye West, Flying Lotus and Kaytranada. The lyricist has sampled many acts, from the English rock band Czar to Japan’s Tatsuro Yamashita, but there is one beatmaker the musician (real name Tyler Okonma) admires.

In a Hulu documentary entitled Rap Caviar Presents: Tyler The Creator, the star talks about the organic friendship he struck up with his idol, Virginia icon Pharrell Williams. As one-half of the legendary producer duo The Neptunes, Williams was responsible for pioneering hip-hop and R’n’B during the 2000s and is considered a visionary. 

During his interview, Okonma explained how Williams helped him in Tyler the Creator often emphasizes the importance of “seeing the bigger picture.” By seeing the bigger picture, he unveiled how he gained a more profound understanding of his purpose and the significance of his endeavours concerning his music.

In a piece to the camera, Okonma stated, “I got to the studio, and he’s just looking up to me like ‘You got it n*gga you just don’t see it! You got the sh*t! You know what Jimmy Iovine told me?!’ [Iovine told me] ‘Pharrell, do you like house music?!” However, Jimmy Iovine didn’t mean the genre; Williams explained he meant “‘No house music, good music that could buy you a house!”

This changed Okonma’s vision, and he unveiled that he told himself, “Okay, no more being silly. Music first! And at that moment, we went home, and we changed everything, I just wanted to switch, and the switch f*cking happened!”

You can watch Okonma talking about how Pharrell Williams changed his life in the video below.